FLORHAM PARK, N.J. (AP) — If the lights are on at the New York Jets' facility, there's a good chance Santonio Holmes is there.
Through morning workouts and late-night treatments, he's pushing himself to get back to being the big-time playmaker he once was. That's what consumes Holmes these days.
"He's in this building, and I'm not exaggerating much," offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg said, "Sixteen or 18 hours a day."
The veteran wide receiver insists he's not completely healthy yet, and his surgically repaired left foot still hurts every day.
But Holmes has shown he still has plenty left, putting up a career-high 154 yards receiving on five receptions last Sunday against Buffalo — including the go-ahead 69-yard touchdown — and re-establishing himself as an important piece of the offense.
That's even if he won't declare himself officially 100 percent back.
"No, I won't do that to myself," Holmes said. "I've said I have a long ways to go. It's only my third game back from a full year recovering."
Nearly a year ago — Sept. 30 against San Francisco — Holmes caught a short pass on the first play of the fourth quarter and felt a sharp pain in his foot. He tossed the ball away as he grabbed at his foot in agony.
It ended his season and put his career in jeopardy. Two surgeries followed along with a slow, steady rehabilitation process that began, as Holmes put it, with him re-learning how to walk.
He suffered a Lisfranc injury, which usually involves separation of ligaments and joints in the middle of the foot.
Not good for any athlete, particularly one whose job it is to outrun defenders on every snap.
Holmes has come a long way from just a few months ago, when there appeared to be no chance that he would be ready to start the season. Not when he couldn't run, let alone make a cut or run a route.
"As I always said (during camp), 'I hope he plays,'" coach Rex Ryan said. "Now you guys know why I was hoping he plays. He's a legitimate No. 1 receiver."
Through three games, Holmes has nine catches for 218 yards and the go-ahead score against the Bills.
The numbers might not be spectacular, but he's making the types of plays again that earned him the nickname "Tone Time" for coming through when the offense needed him most.
"I have to attack it as if I'm going to continue being a starter and a playmaker for this team," Holmes said. "I have to continue to stay healthy and, with God's will, if I can stay healthy throughout the season, who knows what's going to be in store from this point on forward?"